Vicious Velociraptors

Although much smaller than the “Velociraptors” depicted in the Jurassic Park trilogy, this little Theropod dinosaur was armed with a seven centimetre long, strongly curved second toe claw and it possessed about eighty sharp teeth in its jaws.  Described by some palaeontologists as being “poodle-sized”, it may have been one of the smaller “raptors”, but its vicious reputation as so successfully portrayed in the cinema was strongly deserved.

An Illustration of Velociraptor

Vicious Velociraptor.

Vicious Velociraptor.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Like all members of the Dromaeosauridae (swift lizards), this dinosaur had a long, stiff tail.  The tail could not be raised very high, but it could be moved from side to side.  It has been speculated that the tail functioned like a rudder to help the animal to balance as it ran.  It probably fed on small lizards, mammals, baby dinosaurs and even dinosaur eggs, but in a pack it would have been capable of mobbing and bringing down much larger prey.

As for its vicious reputation, this is well deserved.  It was probably a cannibal too.  A baby Velociraptor skull has been discovered with two little holes in the top.  The teeth of an adult Velociraptor fit perfectly into these holes – nasty critter that Velociraptor (Velociraptor mongoliensis).

Share This!Pin on Pinterest3Tweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someoneShare on Facebook0Share on Google+0